On Tuesday, the Pennsylvania State Senate have approved a bill that would direct PA utility inspectors to use federal safety standards with most new shale gas gathering pipelines in the state. The measure now goes to the PA House for consideration.
Pennsylvania is one of two natural-gas-producing states that do not [currently] enforce [federal] safety rules.
The bill would cover many, but not all, types of the gathering lines. Lines built in the most rural areas would remain uninspected by the government, although they would still require federal, state or local permits to cross wetlands, streams and roads.
Companies are expected to build thousands of miles of smaller pipelines to ferry gas from producing Marcellus Shale well sites in Pennsylvania to larger, interstate pipelines.*
*AP/Binghamton Press & Sun Bulletin (Dec 13, 2011) – Pa. Senate OKs gas pipeline safety bill